Begin: Do 10-15 reps of each move 4-5 times a week. (Make sure to exhale while crunching and inhale while lowering.) If that seems too easy for you, try increasing your reps to 15-20, or use a heavier ball or dumbbell.
Gear: A mat, a 6-to 8-lb. medicine ball or a 5-to 8-lb. dumbbell
Bonus: For abs that really rock, do 30 minutes of cardio (blading, running, swimming) before this routine.
LUNGE medicine ball twist works: rectus abdominis (upper and lower abs) and obliques
START Stand straight with legs slightly apart and feet parallel, holding your medicine ball or weight at stomach level.
END Step forward into a lunge position with your right foot. (Your right knee should be directly over your ankle.) Twisting your upper body, lower the ball to your right hipbone. Return to standing position and repeat on the left. (Right and left sides together count as one rep.)
TWIST rotating crunch works: upper and lower abs, and obliques
START Lie in a sit-up position. Place your left hand behind your head and your right hand on your navel. Rest your right ankle on your left knee.
END Exhale and crunch up, rotating your left shoulder toward your right knee. (Don’t just fold your elbow over: Lift your shoulder toward your knee.) Hold for one count and release. Do 10-15 reps, then repeat on the right. Challenge: Hold a medicine ball on you chest.
CRUNCH medicine ball lift works: upper and lower abs, and obliques
START Lie in a sit-up position (tilting your pelvis upward so the small of your back is on the mat), lifting the ball from your chest as you crunch up.
END Once your shoulder blades are off the floor and your arms are straight, lower the ball back to your chest as you recline toward the mat.
LIFT hip-lift crunch works: upper and lower abs
START Lie flat on your back, hands behind your head and legs pointed toward the ceiling (with your knees slightly bent).
END Crunch up, lifting your head, shoulders, and hips off the floor. (Make sure you’re lifting your hips and not just swinging your legs.) Hold for 5 seconds, then release.
Does your stomach feel puffy even after exercise? It could be from gas or bloating, which are caused by eating high-fiber foods, swallowing air (by chewing gum or eating too fast), or retaining fluid. Follow this chart for 2 weeks and get flatter!